Leadership Team



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Rob brings more than a decade of experience advancing clean energy projects in New York City and across the nation.  

Rob incubated concepts to scale neighborhood-based clean energy initiatives during his graduate studies at MIT.  Since returning to New York, Rob has led the Crauderueff team in linking creative financing, community planning and solar development across New York.    

Rob previously served as Policy Director at Sustainable South Bronx, where he supervised a team advancing clean energy, land use planning, and workforce development initiatives.   While working in the Bronx, he successfully advanced legislation through the NYC Council and NYS legislature requiring citywide green infrastructure incentives.   

Rob’s leadership is steeped in cutting edge research.  Rob developed innovative approaches to clean energy practices, with respect to advancing social justice, in numerous capacities: as researcher with the Columbia Earth Institute’s Cool Cities Project; the Harvard Graduate School of Design's Climate Justice Project; the MIT Community Innovators Lab; and the MIT Program on Human Rights & Justice.   Rob holds a Master in City Planning degree from MIT and a B.A. in urban history from Columbia University.


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Steve Schwerd supports the Crauderueff team in an advisory role with respect to reviewing solar designs, developing internal operations, and ensuring quality assurance for project delivery. 

With over 25 years in Consulting Engineering, presently as CEO of Schwerd Consulting, Mr. Schwerd has proven accomplishments in engineering design; project, client, staff and financial management; business development; engineering operations; and firm leadership. Experience ranges from creating small MEP (Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing) departments to a Principal/Shareholder role as the engineering leader for a large multi-office, international full service Architectural & Engineering firm.

With energy and sustainable design a key focus for years, Steve then became involved in renewable energy and design in 2008 as Solar PV became an increasingly viable option.  He developed and led a full service engineering team that emerged as a nationally recognized engineering leader for solar, having completed over 350 projects and 300MW across 25 states prior to his departure.  Upon establishing Schwerd Consulting, Steve can now follow his passion for renewable energy and be fully committed to and active in the Solar industry.

He has worked with many of the leading solar companies and vendors across the country and is the driving force on all firm projects and industry endeavors.

Steve's strengths are noted as being able to effectively communicate technical issues to non-technical people, and being easy and enjoyable to do business with, while being agressive in the pursuit of delivering solutions and results.


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Benoy Thanjan is the Founder and CEO of Reneu Energy.  He has extensive financial experience in the renewable energy industry as well as in the environmental commodities market.  

Before founding Reneu Energy, he was the SREC Trader in the Project Finance Group for SolarCity which merged with Tesla in 2016.  He originated SREC trades with buyers and co-developed their SREC monetization and hedging strategy with the senior management of SolarCity to move into the east coast markets. 

Benoy was the Vice President at Vanguard Energy Partners which is a national solar installer where he focused on project finance solutions for commercial scale solar projects.  He also worked for Ridgewood Renewable Power, a private equity fund, where he analyzed potential investments in renewable energy projects and worked on maximizing the financial return of the projects in the portfolio.  Benoy also worked on the sale of all of the renewable energy projects in Ridgewood’s portfolio.  

He was in the Energy Structured Finance practice for Deloitte & Touche and in Financial Advisory Services practice at Ernst & Young.  Benoy received his first experience in Finance as an intern at D.E. Shaw & Co., which is a global investment firm with 37 billion dollars in investment capital. He has a MBA in Finance from Rutgers University and a BS in Finance and Economics from the Stern School of Business at New York University.  Benoy was an Alumni Scholar at the Stern School of Business.



Kathleen Bakewell is the Chief Design Officer of Crauderueff & Associates. She is a registered landscape architect and LEED Accredited Professional with specialties in Neighborhood Development and Building Design + Construction. Kathleen earned her Master in Landscape Architecture from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University.  She has devoted her 20+ year professional and academic practice to the exploration and creation of productive and ecologically productive landscapes and green infrastructure through connecting natural processes to local and regional ecosystems, infrastructure and cultures.  Currently, this work is focused on urban food and agricultural systems, with an emphasis on the their ecological opportunities.  

Kathleen is a Founding Director of Our Growing Place, a NYCHA children’s food growing and cooking program piloted at Gracie Mansion in 2010. Kathleen is also active in NYC’s sitopian (“food-place”) community and has taught and lectured widely on urban agriculture, at numerous local and national forums including the United Green Building Council’s annual Greenbuild, American Institute of Architects, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, Hungry New York, and the Northeast Sustainable Communities Workshop. She founded and led Sustainable South Bronx’s team that created the SmartRoof demonstration project, featured in the book, “Women in Green.” 

Kathleen contributed to the LEED Regionalization Task Force, the Sustainable Site section of ASHRAE’s Proposed Standard 189.1P, for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings and NYC’s Green Codes Task Force’s landscape section. She has also lectured widely on green infrastructure and high performance landscapes and has taught numerous graduate-level environment planning seminars and urban ecology studios at Yale, Harvard, Columbia and the New Jersey Institute of Technology..

KARIN haerter: building performance professional

Karin's cumulative knowledge of buildings and their systems was acquired during many years in real estate sales and property management. Her knowledge crystalized in 2008 in the direction of the energy efficient performance of buildings, in a return to an early enthusiasm for energy conservation.  She finds that the building science involved in building performance seamlessly illuminates the understanding of the multiple issues critical to the proper performance of the built environment. In addition to her love of science, she looks forward to the challenge of solving performance problems, combining field observation and testing along with research to diagnose deficiencies and make recommendations to produce positive outcomes. Not only will well planned energy efficiency work save clients money, but it will also result in more durable, more comfortable, and healthier buildings. 

Karin is a Building Performance Institute Certified Professional, a HERS Rater through RESNET (Energy Star), and a Level 2 Certified Thermal Photographer.  Her field experience includes full energy audits. independent third party verification testing, consultation for new construction, HERS Ratings, and field testing including Blower Door, Duct Blaster, and Infrared forensics. She has evaluated the performance of many building types, from old structures to new builds, low rise to high rise, residential to commercial, and has provided insightful consultation on numerous projects in the planning stages.